A Great Weekend Project — DIY Arcade Controller

Mockup

While writing projects are in full swing, I often tend to collect small DIY projects that remain stacked on shelves until I have some of that free time… I’ve recently finished up writing two books that are now heading to the printer, and I find myself with some free time. I should be putting together a proposal for my next book, but instead I’ve reached for a small box of parts.
This past weekend’s project was quick and simple (relatively speaking), and I had a very easy gauge for determining its success or failure … would I be able to play the classic Atari 2600 game, Adventure, as it was meant to be played? Continue reading

Kickstarter Reminder — DuinoKit Jr. Electronics/Arduino Project Kit

DuinoKit Jr2

This is just a quick reminder that the DuinoKit Jr. Kickstarter project is down to less than a week. It’s already reached its funding goal, so any stragglers out there who might be looking for a fun all-in-one electronics style kit that teaches Arduino and programming, take a look at the DuinoKit Jr.

Project owner, Dan Alich, has finished two successful Kickstarter projects previously, both larger versions of this kit called the DuinoKit Essentials. Dan understands the issues with manufacturing and shipping, so he’s got the experience needed to delivery the products on time for a May 2015 delivery. Continue reading

Hobbyist Kits — Yesterday (200-in-1) and Today (DuinoKit)!

The DuinoKits

I must have been around twelve years of age when I began developing an interest in electronics. I started taking electronic gizmos like alarm clocks and kitchen appliances apart (often without permission) and examining them more closely. Rather than discourage me, my parents switched gears and birthday and Christmas presents moved from toys to more fun and advanced project-like gifts. One of the more memorable ones was a 200-in-1 electronics kit from Radio Shack. Continue reading

Mini Maker Faire Returns to London’s Elephant and Castle

London's Mini Maker Faire at Elephant and Castle

Next weekend (November 15th to be precise) the Mini Maker Faire returns to London’s College of Communication in Elephant and Castle, and GeekDad will be there together with DIY.org Continue reading

Kickstarter Alert – SAM: The Internet of Everything for Everyone

The prototype SAM modules

SAM is a new project which has just launched on Kickstarter, taking the idea behind individual electronic components that connect together – pioneered by littleBits – and freeing them from the need to be physically connected by adding a battery and wireless chip to each module. Continue reading

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Mod Game Boys

Cleaning up our workspace.

Of all the fellows on staff here at GeekDad, I’d be willing to guess that I am the least mechanically inclined. However, as I slide ever closer to middle-age, I’ve recently begun to find my footing… by tinkering with old game systems. Continue reading

Mooshimeter: Funny Name, Cool Product

MooshimeterTesla

A few different friends pointed me at this Dragon Innovate project last week and I had to check it out. Mooshimeter seems like a silly name, but the product behind it promises to change the way we diagnose electrical problems. Equipped with a dual channel circuit tester, Bluetooth, and your smart phone, you can use this meter to measure voltage and current up to 30 feet away. Continue reading

8 Tricks for Getting Out of Bed in the Morning

Tips for Waking Up

I’m not a morning person. I’ve tried. Really. But I stay up too late and I’d sleep in every morning if I had the chance. But there aren’t enough hours in the day for kids, hobbies, work, and sleep, but life’s far too short to spend it all in a drowsy haze. So here are 10 tips I use for getting up early every morning. Continue reading

London Gets Its Own (Mini) Maker Faire – Finally!

London's Mini Maker Faire

This coming Saturday (July 6th), London finally gets its own Maker Faire, to be held from 10am until 6pm at the London College of Communication, in Elephant & Castle. Come along and make some stuff with your kids! Continue reading

Great Idea: Adafruit Running a 6-Second Film Fest to Feature Your Projects

6seconds

Our friends Limor (Lady Ada) and Phillip over at Adafruit Industries have a great little contest going on. Using the micro-video service Vine, people are encouraged to submit 6-second videos of their cool electronics projects. Continue reading

SparkFun Electronics Presents According to Pete – Filtering

spfn

Have you ever wanted to understand electronic filtering better? Here is a favorite According to Pete segment from SparkFun Electronics that addresses that topic in one of the best, easiest to understand, descriptions I’ve ever seen. Continue reading

Robots, Electronics Hacking, and Kids

I built my first robot at age 7. It was made out of parts from an Erector set and stood about three feet tall. It had arms and legs and wheels under its feet. A (very weak) motor was supposed … Continue reading

OpenBeam — It’s Like Lego Parts and Pieces for Makers!

OpenBeam is for tinkerers, makers, fast prototypers, and anyone looking for a method to quickly and easily assemble structures. OpenBeam is a collection of parts — beams, joining plates, fasteners, and more — that allow you to assemble structures using … Continue reading

The I Am So Far Behind in My Book Reviews Review

The end of 2012 is fast approaching, and I’m doing my best to clear my desk, so to speak. I can’t speak for the other GeekDad writers, but it’s always the end of the year when my To Review List … Continue reading

A $13 ARM Single-Board Computer

We live in a great time to be an electronics tinkerer. What with the Arduino, Raspberry Pi, BeagleBoard and other single-board computers, it’s cheap and easy to get started with hardware hacking. And the options available to prospective makers continue … Continue reading

E Is for Electronics Is a Coloring Book for Geeky Kids

Our good friends at Adafruit Industries have just released a wonderful new book. E Is for Electronics is billed as the world’s first open-source, Creative Commons-licensed coloring book, using important people and concepts from the world of electronics to represent … Continue reading

Kickstart Your Own Space Program With Firefly, A Flexible Mission Control Board

We’ve previously highlighted the Firefly, an Arduino-compatible system with onboard power, charging, data logging, and radio communications–all the standard stuff that can take a while to piece together individually. The flexible “mission control” board can be used for a variety of projects … Continue reading